Today, Senator Olympia Snowe announced that she will not be seeking re-election. No doubt, many of us have disagreed with some of the votes and positions elected officials like Sen. Snowe have taken. Read the comments on this blog (and others) and the same could be said about almost any Democrat serving in congress.
Senator Snowe is retiring because of the extreme partisanship that has dug its nails into our society. “I do find it frustrating…that an atmosphere of polarization and ‘my way or the highway’ ideologies has become pervasive in campaigns and in our governing institutions,” she said Tuesday.
Snowe’s retirement is great news for Democrats looking to keep control of the U.S. Senate, but it should also serve as a moment of reflection for our Party.
From Sen. Specter to Sen. Snowe, Republicans are leaving the GOP, are being pushed out of GOP, or feel that the GOP has left them. Where will these “moderate Republicans” go?
Democrats can either choose to embrace moderate Republicans or Democrats can shun them just like the TEA Partiers and extremists that banished them.
I encourage we Democrats embrace them. This is a pivotal moment.
We both extend our hand and build a party based on reasonableness and responsibility or we shut moderates out and become just as insolated, incestuous, and out-of-touch as the GOP of today.
Of course, extending our hand means compromise, but it also means we have a better chance of defending and expanding our most cherished institutions and ideals.
Simply put, we should avoid litmus tests and embrace those who are abandoning extremism.